Liege shootings: Gunman 'had killed day prior to attack'
The man who shot dead two police officers and a civilian in the Belgian city of Liège had killed a person the night ahead of the attacks, the country’s interior minister says.
Jan Jambon stated the gunman, named as Benjamin Herman, had murdered a man – a former prisoner – he met even though in jail.
Prosecutors say they are treating the attacks as “terrorist murder”.
The gunman also took a female cleaner hostage at a college prior to becoming killed by police.
Officials said the 31-year-old man had shouted “Allahu Akbar” (“God is greatest” in Arabic) many times throughout the attack.
He was let out from prison on temporary release on Monday where he had been serving time for theft and drug offences. Neighborhood media report that he might have been radicalised even though in jail.
“There are indicators he was radicalised in prison, but is it that radicalisation which drove him to commit these acts?” Mr Jambon mentioned on RTL radio.
“It could have been simply because he had absolutely nothing to look forward to, simply because he also killed an individual the evening before, the guy’s psychology and the truth… he might have been on drugs.”
The shooting unfolded late on Tuesday morning close to a cafe in the city centre.
Prosecutors said the man followed and “savagely” attacked two female police officers, aged 44 and 54. He stabbed them repeatedly from behind with a knife ahead of taking a gun from them and opening fire.
He also shot dead a 22-year-old man who was sitting in the passenger seat of a parked automobile. He then walked to a nearby school, exactly where he briefly took a member of employees hostage.
Armed police officers with shields, helmets and bulletproof vests then arrived at the scene and “intervened”.
The attacker started firing at the officers in an attempt to escape. Two officers have been shot in the leg, leaving a single officer in a severe condition.
Two other officers received injuries to their arms prior to the attacker was shot dead, prosecutors stated.
Footage on social media showed individuals operating to security as a number of gunshots rang out. Kids at the school were moved to safety.
What’s the wider predicament?
Belgium remains on alert after a series of jihadist attacks in the nation and in neighbouring France.
A Brussels-based cell was involved in the 2015 Paris attacks which left 130 folks dead in many places.
Brussels itself saw 3 suicide bombings in March 2016, with 32 people killed. Each the Paris and Brussels attacks had been claimed by the Islamic State-group.
Later in 2016 a man attacked two police officers with machetes although shouting “Allahu Akbar” before becoming shot dead.
Published at Wed, 30 Could 2018 10:17:52 +0000